After Derek's breakup with Demi last week on Bachelor in Paradise, it's hard to understand why he's even still here. I get that he came on the show to find love, but the heartbreak with Demi was real. At the start of the episode, he willingly got into a hole on the beach allowed himself to be buried in the sand. The guy is in pain, and right now, Derek is a mood on Bachelor in Paradise with the memes to prove it.
The worst part is, Derek and Demi's breakup isn't anyone's fault. No one cheated and no one intentionally hurt the other. Demi realized her feelings for Kristian, who she had been in an open relationship with back home, and Derek understood that she needed to follow her heart. Without anyone to blame for his newly broken heart, all Derek can really do is sulk around Paradise until he finds a connection with someone else.
Right now, Tayshia seems like she wants to full the void in Derek's heart left by his breakup with Demi. If that happens, viewers could see a complete turnaround. But Derek is basically doing the defeated Charlie Brown walk on Bachelor in Paradise and fans get it.
Then again, maybe Derek has the right idea. It seems to be easy for most Bachelor in Paradise contestants to move on as soon as someone new arrives. Derek, on the other hand, is all about taking the time to wallow and anyone who has ever gone through a breakup knows how important the wallowing step is.
The light at the end of the tunnel is Tayshia's sudden interest in Derek. The way he broke down in the last episode after his breakup with Demi shows how much he throws himself into his relationships in Bachelor Nation. With the right person, that can work in his favor. At the start of Monday's Bachelor in Paradise episode, however, Derek wasn't trying to move on, but was living his most manageable post-breakup life with a drink on the beach. In the sand. Trying to avoid his ex and her new girlfriend.
It was hard to watch Derek break down to producers after his breakup, especially since is his third time on a show in The Bachelor franchise. He was originally a contestant on JoJo's season of The Bachelorette and returned to find love on Bachelor in Paradise Season 4. Things didn't work out with Taylor Nolan after the season ended and he came back to TV a third time in an effort to find lasting love.
Most fans understand where Derek is coming from right now. He has every right to want to work through his emotions in his own time and figure things out before rushing into another romantic commitment. Because things can be more fast paced on Bachelor in paradise, though, he will probably be dating someone else in due time.
Still, Derek's buried in the sand routine showed just how down he was and made him that much relatable for fans. Derek tried to work through his feelings about his breakup with Demi on Tuesday's episode and struggled to figure out what his right next move is. He told Tayshia he felt like he shouldn't be so emotional, but she tried to help him see he can move forward.
Incidentally, Derek might be ready to move on with Tayshia of all people. If he's open to trying to find love again, Tayshia could be the person to help him get out of his funk and stay out of the sand holes for good.
Bachelor in Paradise airs on Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.